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NFL Salary Exploitation is a weekly piece based around finding the best and most egregious value-based plays from site-to-site. We'll be taking a look at DraftKings, FanDuel and Yahoo!, deciphering where to look for the best values on a position-by-position basis. Some weeks will be more cash game plays and other will be more tournament based, it's simply how the sites adjust to injuries, news and other related materials that can shift snaps, match-ups and other research reliant variables.

Quarterbacks

PlayerOpponentDraftKings SalaryFanDuel SalaryYahoo! Salary
Cam Newton@CHI$7,000$8,100$35
Josh McCown@MIA$5,200$7,000$21

At first glance this week we look at a pretty ugly slate of games. DraftKings misses out on the ATL-NE game, while FanDuel and Yahoo expand into Sunday Night. When Vegas numbers start to come out, do not be surprised to see a lot of lower totals. Outside of a few teams, this is going to be a narrow week when it comes to breaking down each individual team. DraftKings value quarterbacks differ a lot from FanDuel and Yahoo's. We got robbed of a Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers showdown this week, and the Rodgers injury total changes the dynamic of that game.

Josh McCown is that first value quarterback that continues to be missed when it comes to being priced up. He is just $7,000 on FanDuel this week, and the only other plays around him would include Carson Palmer, and maybe Tyrod Taylor. McCown on Yahoo is priced around Kevin Hogan, Joe Webb, and AJ McCarron. Kind of shocking there. McCown is $7 cheaper than Jimmy Garoppolo. On DraftKings, below the $6,000 mark we have Jared Goff at home against Arizona, which is a hit or miss game for him. Philip Rivers takes on Denver, and then we have a lot of backup quarterbacks in the mix, or ones that are injured at the moment. McCown has oddly been a decent value QB to start the year, as New York continues to impress given their roster and circumstances.

The tier one group of quarterbacks are priced up as they should be. Russell Wilson is the only one to have slipped out, who travels to New York this week in a tricky eastern time zone game that always seem to give Seattle trouble. We need to keep an eye on Marcus Mariota this week, who has a great matchup against Cleveland. Other than that, we are looking at the SNF quarterbacks, Cam Newton, and Dak Prescott. They are pretty tightly priced together, so nobody stands out as a standalone value.

Running Backs

PlayerOpponentDraftKings SalaryFanDuel SalaryYahoo! Salary
LeSean McCoyTB$7,400$7,900$28
Adrian PetersonLAR$5,800$6,300$22

After an explosion of value running backs last week, we saw the price hike of guys like Mark Ingram, Alvin Kamara, Jerick McKinnon, and Adrian Peterson. Both New Orleans running backs got priced up quite a bit on DraftKings, yet they failed to really get a significant bump on FanDuel. In fact all four of those names are lower than $7,200. That still qualifies as value for me there.

I do want to look at LeSean McCoy who is a tremendous spot this weekend, and is due for big workload. He is about $1,500 cheaper than guys like Le'Veon Bell, and Leonard Fournette. I consider that to be a steal, and it has a lot to do with McCoy being quiet the last few weeks, and likely the bye. At an early glance, McCoy is one of my favorite running backs early on this week.

Arizona looked to have new life in them, and a lot of it had to do with Adrian Peterson's run game. It has been lacking the last few weeks, and Peterson looks like he will be a staple to the offense moving forward. Now Andre Ellington is going to be game script dependent moving forward, while in close and winning game scripts Peterson will have the heavy hand. Peterson did not see as big of bump as the guys mentioned above, sitting at those enticing prices this week.

You are probably asking why

Wide Receivers

PlayerOpponentDraftKings SalaryFanDuel SalaryYahoo! Salary
Davante AdamsNO$5,800$6,900$22
Cooper KuppARI$4,600$5,800$14
Pierre GarconDAL$5,800$6,700$19

The Green Bay passing game is not looking good right now. Aaron Rodgers is done for the season, while Brett Hundley steps under center. The Packers wideouts have dropped in price this week, against a defense that has turned it on a bit more than previous years. Green Bay is going to likely be a contrarian team here on out, given the weekly stability is under fire. Risky plays this week, and moving forward, but their prices are down.

I am not particularly thrilled with Cooper Kupp, but I am not really thrilled with the deeper values at the position. That has been my stance over the last few weeks, as value guys into the 3K-4K range on DraftKings have turned into Juju Smith-Schuster and Marquise Goodwin. $5,000 guys are now along the lines of Tyrell Williams and Sammy Watkins. Neither draw interest for me. However, you do have the secondary Cardinals WRs, Rashard Matthews, and the Jets WRs there, so there is some cheaper value, but it is limited. Kupp is one of those secondary WRs to look at this week given Arizona struggles to contain any WR that Patrick Peterson is not on. I will pass on FanDuel, but DK and Y make more sense.

In a game where San Francisco is likely to be trailing, Pierre Garcon opens the door for another 8+ target game. He continues to see a heavy workload, and is certainly on the bottom tier of pricing when it comes to WR2s. It is a decent matchup this week, and for the volume I feel these prices should not go unnoticed.

Tight Ends

PlayerOpponentDraftKings SalaryFanDuel SalaryYahoo! Salary
Jimmy Graham@NYG$4,900$5,800$22
Evan EngramSEA$4,400$5,500$18

This game features two tight ends that I feel are just slightly underpriced for their matchup and potential. Tight ends against the Giants have been an obvious target for the first few weeks, which is why Graham pops up on the map. If he was in the mid $6,000's, or $5,000's then we would be looking a bit more carefully at playing him. Tight end is a bit limited this week, which has also not been a surprise.

While the Seattle matchup is tough, so was the Denver matchup, and Evan Engram is going to be the clear option for a battered passing attack in New York. The price tag is likely going to be on the move north moving forward.

If you are looking for cheaper options, George Kittle is the only one that really stands out, seeing 15+ targets over the last two weeks.

Defenses

PlayerOpponentDraftKings SalaryFanDuel SalaryYahoo! Salary
Buffalo BillsTB$3,400$4,500$15
Minnesota VikingsBAL$3,300$4,600$16

In terms of what are mis-priced defenses, these two stood out the most. Buffalo Bills have not been below eight fantasy points yet this season, and are priced nicely for a Week 7 matchup against Tampa Bay. The Bucs may or may not be without Jameis Winston, but it really isn't going to matter to me. They carry a bit more value to their dollar on FanDuel and Yahoo.

Minnesota isn't quite the fantasy scoring defense they were last year, but they get a Baltimore offense at home that continues to be one of the worst offenses in the NFL. They should fly under the radar in tournaments, and also come in a bit underpriced if you want to weight matchup.



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